Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has told its shareholders that it may face fines of up to $4.6 billion if federal regulators determine that the company fitted diesel control devices on its vehicles.
The Detroit News reports that FCA recently informed investors that it had received subpoenas and information requests from the U.S. Department of Justice, Security and Exchange Commission and a number of states’ attorneys. The company is alleged to have fitted approximately 104,000 diesel pickup trucks and SUVs with devices designed to cheat emissions tests.
In the report, FCA said “If we are found to have violated any of the provisions of the Clean Air Act, we could be subject to penalties imposed by the EPA and (California Air Resources Board) as well as other government authorities.”
While FCA vehemently denies any wrongdoing, the EPA says that there were at least eight auxiliary emission control devices on 2014-16 Dodge Ram 1500 pickups and Jeep Grand Cherokees with the available 3.0-liter diesel engine. The use of such devices is technically legal but regulators in the U.S. require disclosures before any such vehicles can be sold in the United States.
“Such investigations could result in the imposition of damages, fines or civil and criminal penalties. It is possible that the resolution of these matters could have a material adverse effect on our financial position, results of operations or cash flows and may adversely affect our reputation with consumers, which may negatively impact demand for our vehicles,” FCA concluded in its statement.